Incumbents Get Big Wins So Republicans Can Hang Onto Control Of Senate

( While there are still some elections yet to be called, it seems like Republicans can breathe a sigh of relief in regard to their control over the Senate.

Two big fights were won by Republican incumbents who will hold onto their seats – Susan Collins in Maine and Steve Daines in Montana.

Democrat Sara Gideon, who was well-funded in her campaign in Maine, conceded the race to Collins on Wednesday morning. With 85% of the precincts reporting, Collins had a 9-point lead. The Associated Press hadn’t yet declared a winner, but Collins holds a big enough lead to not have to worry about it.

Collins faced many attacks from Democrats, who focused on her support in 2018 for Supreme Court justice Brett Kavanaugh. The party used that to raise money, and they brought in almost $70 million to try to get Gideon elected in Maine. That was more than twice as much money as Collins raised, but it didn’t matter in the end.

The incumbent from Maine will now return to serve her fifth term in the Senate.

In Montana, meanwhile, Daines was ahead by almost 7 percentage points early Wednesday morning when the Associated Press called the race in his face. The incumbent took down Steve Bullock, who the Democrats were hoping would get them another seat in the Senate.

In 2016, Bullock won re-election as Montana’s governor, which gave Democrats hope that he could unseat Daines in the Senate race.

As early as 2019, Bullock said running for a seat in the Senate was “an absolute no” for him. But after being convinced to do so by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, he finally decided to throw his hat into the ring, right before the deadline in Montana to do so.

That campaign now has proven to be unfruitful. Voters in Montana sided with Daines, who said Bullock was too liberal for residents of the state. Bullock had expressed support for gun-control measures, which likely didn’t fare well at all with Montana voters.

Bullock, too, had a big fundraising edge over Daines of $43 million to $27 million. But again, the money didn’t make a difference in the election.

These two races are helping contribute to the Republicans hanging onto control of the Senate in this crucial election year.

In Kentucky, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell easily won re-election. The race was called by the Associated Press on Tuesday night, when McConnell had a 24-point lead over Democrat Amy McGrath.

McGrath raised an astounding $90 million trying to take down the leader of the Senate, and 97% of that came from outside of Kentucky. McConnell, meanwhile, has always touted his respect for the people of the state who he loves representing.

In October, he wrote an op-ed for the Courier-Journal that pointed out he’s the only leader in Congress who’s not from California or New York. He said this gives “Kentucky the opportunity to punch above its weight and bring home big wins we would not otherwise get if we had a rookie senator.”